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— A gunman shot dead three people and injured another two in a mountain village in southern Switzerland, police said.

Officers were alerted to the shootings in Daillon, near the city of Sion in the Valais canton at 8:50 p.m. yesterday by a caller, who reported seeing “several wounded people lying on the ground,” the regional police force said in a statement posted on its website late Wednesday.

An elite police unit deployed to the village opened fire on the gunman after he threatened them, later arresting him, according to the statement. He was seriously injured, cantonal authorities said later on their website.

“The 33-year-old man was armed with an old army rifle and a shotgun of the type commonly used for shooting birds,” Valais police spokesman Markus Rieder said in a telephone interview Thursday. “All three killed were women. The injured were both men.”

The women, aged 32, 54 and 79, died at the scene and the two injured were hospitalized, he said. The shooter knew the victims and is not related to them, the Valais cantonal government said Thursday in an online statement.

He had been drinking heavily before the deadly rampage, the 20 Minuten website reported, citing a local cafe owner, Marie-Paul Udry, who turned off the lights at his premises and prevented diners from leaving as shots echoed in the street.

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